Monday, April 27, 2009

Look -- something shiny!

In the hopes of distracting you from realizing how neglectful I've been of this blog ... oh, darn! It's too late, you say? Eh. Great. Oh well. I can't even call this a reward for reading so faithfully. So this isn't a distraction, and it's not a reward. But it's something.

video

Please excuse my messy office and stupid voice.

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Thursday, April 23, 2009

Full-on ramble

- I can't seem to find a quarter of the things on my list when I go to a store lately. Not just food shopping, but places like Target or the craft store. I'm not looking for hard-to-find items. Has the recession made stores stop carrying stuff? I guess we'll know when people start fighting over the last package of toilet paper (er, "bathroom tissue" if you're fancy).

- My health insurance company asked me to enroll in a healthy-pregnancy program that would give me access to a nurse on the phone around the clock. It sounded good until they kept calling and leaving messages, and then when I would return the calls and be on hold for three minutes, I'd hang up. And the process would start over again. When I actually got to talk to someone to find out what they wanted, it was a guy asking me questions about very private parts, and I told him I wanted out of the program. Two weeks later, they sent me a $50 gift card and a guidebook to pregnancy. I hurried and spent the money before they realized what had happened . . . .

- Related to that, I am running out of patience lately. Or at least, I don't seem to have a great tolerance for Fly's shenanigans. The past few days of terrible-two behavior have had me greatly stressing. And I had myself a little meltdown yesterday. JP was there for me. He came home early and told me to get out of the house for a little while. I love him. Marriage definitely has its perks. He didn't even blink when I told him I'd send him a postcard.

- By the way, does anyone know how to get a two-and-a-half-year-old to listen and do what he's told?

- Specifically, not to run away from me and make me chase him and then carry him bodily back to where he needs to be? My pregnant body just isn't up for that anymore. This is how fast I have to run to catch up to him:



- And because today is Take Your Child to Work Day, I think it would be a splendid idea for JP to do just that.

- A friend told me crushed Cap'n Crunch cereal was good to coat chicken with before you bake it. Another friend said wheat germ was good too. So I bought both. Guess which one I've already had two bowls full of?

- Speaking of Cap'n Crunch, have you looked at the box lately? Doesn't it seem as though the company has "Sponge Bob-ized" the look of all the characters? Everyone looks stark raving mad.

- I am thinking about getting my hair cut. As in, seriously shortened. I've had short hair three times in my life. See my blog header? My hair isn't that long. But it has been. However, I just don't have time for it. Or patience. (See above.) And when the baby comes, it will probably look like a rat's nest unless I cut it to a length I can maintain because it is inhumanely thick (I get it thinned once or twice a year) and curly (but not in a good way). I just do not want to turn my hair into a hobby.

- So what's a good style for a hexagon-shaped face?

- We were going to go away this weekend to use tickets to a water theme park we bought before the Junebug came into being. Now we have about a month to use the tickets before they expire, and I am forbidden from going down any water slides while pregnant even though it is one of the most fun things to do in the world. (Yes, I am 11 years old.) Our plan was to drive there Friday night, play in the water on Saturday and come home Sunday. But we had to buy a new water heater unexpectedly. And a car-repair bill cost about 40% more than estimated. Now our dishwasher is broken. And we have to pay the doula. So two nights at a hotel would be financially irresponsible. If I could just talk JP into driving there and back on the same day, then we wouldn't need a hotel . . . .

- Actually, it might be easier to talk myself out of thinking it would be fun to heft my big, lazy body around a place where a bunch of skinny people were walking around and having a great time on the water slides. ("That should be me . . . sob!") Yeah, maybe not the best way to spend a Saturday.

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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

What I'd Wear Wednesday: Blue

Today's What I'd Wear Wednesday comes from Tatiana at It Was A Very Good Year. She is a graduate of the Bustin' Out Babies list after recently having a beautiful daughter, and she has some great picks below. Enjoy!

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Since I just had a baby girl, my house is flooded with pink. Pink onesies, blankets, shoes, carseat cover, wall paint -- you name it, I've got it. So naturally, I'd wear... blue!

I haven't worn heels since somewhere in the middle of my pregnancy, an experience made harrowing by the fact that, you know, I had a baby belly... and it was raining. But if I were to put on a heel now, it'd be these adorable Gabriella Rocha "Chrisella" ones from Zappos.com:



This silky cami top from AE has me salivating:



I worry that the shiny fabric would highlight my post-baby belly chub, so I'd grab this great Nixxi ruffled top at Mudshark Streetwear:



What about a stylish bag? I love bags with silver accents like this Sabina O Ring Satchel from Urban Outfitters:



And you can't have blue without a sexy pair of jeans. I have curvy hips, so I'd balance them out with this great wide-leg style from Free People:

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Monday, April 20, 2009

Working at the car wash



(Turns out I'm not the only one with a kid drawn to buckets the moment you're looking the other way.)

Paper and sign by Baers Garten. Photo mask by Kylie M Designs. Bubbles by Kristin Aagard. Alpha by Ziggle.

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Friday, April 17, 2009

Talk about talk

Believe it or not, at one time in my life, I considered studying for an advanced degree in linguistics. Language, semantics, alphabets and how people communicate have always fascinated me.

I'm also fascinated by chocolate. But . . . you know.

At the time, though, it seemed options for linguistics people were teaching (on a community college or university level) or research (images of teaching sign language to gorillas came to mind). Neither path was my cuppa joe.

But later, I realized linguistics researchers also study how children learn language. And that did grab my attention.

Even before I considered becoming a mom, I enjoyed talking with toddlers and preschoolers. The way they speak is so free -- they don't know all the language rules, they haven't learned the words for everything and they aren't constrained by colloquialisms. They usually don't even know what's appropriate to say. Their whole thought process for getting across what they want to express is unhindered by the language conventions we learn as we get older. That kind of freedom of mind and tongue is amazing to think about. Here are people who communicate from their own unique, brand-new, fresh perspective on the world.

Today is the first day I realized Fly is really and truly talking. Not just a few phrases he has learned. Not just yes-or-no answers to my questions. Not just to say the alphabet, count, or point out shapes or colors. Fly formulates his own ideas, asks questions, tells me what he wants (or more likely, what he doesn't want) and narrates what he is doing.

Fly is talking!



Not only is my munchkin now a walking, talking child I can have an actual conversation with, but I get to experience that freedom of mind and tongue I so admire.

I feel so lucky.

And yet . . . .

My adult mind is already wondering how I'm going to put up with constant little-people chatter!

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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

What I'd Wear Wednesday: Accessories

What I'd wear today if I could: this cute Mayan necklace from Eddie Bauer.

(I know. I said I wasn't going to do a weekly WIWW post unless I was inspired. I couldn't stay away this week.)

This catalog came in the mail, and my thoughtful JP flipped through it and tagged some items for me he thought I might be able to wear in a large size. Isn't that sweet? While looking for his tagged pages, I found this necklace, which shows the symbol for "spirit." "Fire" and "water" are also available. I'm not even sure why I like this necklace -- it just grabbed me.

Then I discovered this cuff cuff (my name for it) online, from Free People:



Once again, I don't know why I like it. I just do.

Guess I'm at the point in my pregnancy when I start looking at accessories instead of clothes!

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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

30-week belly bump



I'm so sorry this is all you get. I felt super sick today, and there's no way I was about to show my face.

I'm also sorry this is all you get, because super friend Guinny and I conspired to have her photograph me on the beach, but it didn't work out. Very soon, I hope . . . .

Yesterday was my last appointment with the genetic counselor. My little Junebug still has a bright spot on the heart. But again, the doctor doesn't seem to be concerned because everything else looks normal -- as far as you can tell by an ultrasound. The baby measured big, too, at three and a half pounds (78 percentile, supposedly), so I guess I'm doing something right. (Although my OB said ultrasound measurements can be off by as much as a pound.)

The best part is JP and I got to see the baby's face. Sort of. If I can wrangle the pictures from the proud papa, I will try to post one . . . .

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Saturday, April 11, 2009

Happy Easter



Hope you have a happy Easter filled with lots of blessings!

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Wednesday, April 08, 2009

What I'd Wear Wednesday: Bright sweaters

What I'd wear today if I could: a bright sweater like maybe this starfish sweater from Boston Proper. I love me some sea creature motifs. (My friend Missy went to Cancun a few weeks ago and brought me back a silver turtle pendant. Sweet!) It's been cool here the past couple of days, and it's likely my last chance to break out my measly stash of sweaters (which don't fit me anymore anyway) for the next eight months.

Except the lines on this sweater are going the wrong way.

I avoid horizontal stripes.

So BP has this other bright sweater:



Ah, bueno! The stripes are going the right way.

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After almost two and a half years of faithfully posting What I'd Wear Wednesday, I think I will take a break. If I feel inspired, I'll post, but maybe just not every week. If you'd like to guest post, please let me know.

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Tuesday, April 07, 2009

What I didn't know about motherhood

Did anyone see the "Secret Lives of Moms" show on Oprah yesterday? There was some blogger and Twitter buzz about it because Dooce appeared on the show. (Dooce, the blogger and writer who needs no introduction or explanation -- she was on Oprah because of her blog! And her book.)

I don't watch Oprah much, but I tried to catch a bit of the show yesterday. Moms were confessing things they have done and talking about how hard motherhood is and how they sometimes feel like failures. And it seemed a good part of the show was about how no one tells you stuff like this is going to happen before you become a mom.

I might have mentioned here before that a friend tried to warn me about some of motherhood's rougher areas -- but she did it at my baby shower. Where everyone was happy. Where people were talking about Fly with excitement. Where I was opening gift after sweetly wrapped gift. Where I likely had a sugar high.

That's not a good time to tell the mom-to-be, "You know, motherhood is tough. Sometimes your baby won't sleep, and so you won't sleep, either, and that alone can make you go crazy. A baby can put a strain on your marriage. Have you and JP talked about this?" That kind of thing. My friend caught me off guard. I tried -- but probably failed -- to appear interested in what she was saying while giving her non-replies.

Thinking back to my baby shower, and thinking about yesterday's Oprah show, I wonder if it really would have made a difference if my friend had tried to talk to me in a different time or place. Every one of us moms might have a "I wish had known about" list in our minds when it comes to being a mom.

But I'm not sure if it would have mattered if my friend had taken a different tack with me. I think some things you have to learn on your own, from experience -- and I think motherhood is probably one of them. Of course, having some knowledge beforehand can prepare you on one level, but living it day to day? I don't think anyone can really prepare you for that.

I had read breastfeeding is actually hard. But I didn't know in Fly's first several weeks that I would come to dread every time he had to eat because it made me cry in pain.

I knew I would lose sleep. Duh. But I didn't know sleep deprivation does nasty things to your mind and your personality.

I knew I wouldn't have much time for myself. But I didn't know that would mean my skin would feel like it was crawling after three days without a shower, or that I would feel invisible passing beautiful young women in the store, or that part of me would be desperate to travel a couple hours away to snorkel, hike or look for birds.

I knew JP and I would need to adjust to being a threesome with our Flybaby after having been just the two of us since we met each other at 15. But I didn't realize I would have rather uncharitable thoughts toward JP because his life hasn't seemed to have changed as much as mine and because I still get jealous of him whenever he's sick because he goes straight to bed and just lies there until he's better (which I can't do).

I had a mild notion that it could be hard to stay home with a baby all day, but I didn't know even two and a half years later that every day I wrack my brain to answer, "What am I going to do with this child all day?"

Motherhood is too big of a life change to be prepared and ready to tackle everything that comes at you. And as your child grows, new challenges come at you all the time. I was just talking with a friend last night -- an "experienced mom" -- who says worrying over your kids can get worse after they have left the house and started their own families.

Once a mom, always a mom.

So while I think it's definitely helpful to clue in a mom-to-be with the realities of what it's like to be a mom, I don't think anyone can expect to really know what they're getting into. Each child is different, anyway. The only way to work motherhood is just jump in there and do what has to be done for your individual child. We each write our own manual by day-to-day parenting.

And maybe that's the ultimate advice for moms-to-be: be prepared, get advice or help. And write your own mama script every day.

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Saturday, April 04, 2009

At the egg hunt


Made with Scrap Girls frames, Ellie Lash splatter and eggs, word art and ribbon unknown

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Wednesday, April 01, 2009

What I'd Wear Wednesday: Chain halter

What I'd wear today if I could: a chain halter top like maybe this one from Michael Michael Kors, found at Macy's. It was hot today. In fact, Fly got hurt briefly by the metal buckle of his car seat because it was so hot.

I walked through Macy's this week (note: that is different from saying I shopped there, or I went to the store on purpose, because really I just had to pick up something at the mall really quick and the parking was good at Macy's, and besides the salespeople kind of hate us because Fly takes advantage of the store's good acoustics and high ceilings by squealing loudly), and I noticed a green-and-white-print chain halter on display near the front of the store. The top looked kind of loose, and I wondered if a large size would fit me.

I stopped at the wondering.

But the chain makes the simple shape of the halter interesting, and sort of acts like jewelry too, don't you think?

Here's another chain halter I found, by Milly, at Bloomingdale's (I think).



These tops are likely meant to be dressy-casual chic -- and for sure they have more style oomph than a regular tank top -- but I'd still wear them with shorts and sandals and just go on with my day.

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